Importers who import commercial goods into Canada must maintain books and records as prescribed by the Customs Act and Regulations. Importers must be prepared to provide access to and copies of to Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) for trade audit purposes. In this blog, we will explore the dos and don’ts of importer record keeping responsibilities for Customs.
What is Step 1 when importing commercially into Canada? Well, the answer is obtaining a Business Number (BN). In this blog we will explore what it is, why importers need one and how it’s different from an Import/Export (RM) number.
Many importers wonder why their shipment may have been referred by Customs for examination. Additionally, importers who import via a seaport may be presented with charges such as demurrage and detention and not be clear on what these charges relate to. Let’s take a closer look at these terms to gain some understanding.
The Internal Audit and Program Evaluation Directorate of the Canadian Government completed a horizontal evaluation of the Single Window Initiative (SWI) and published it in December 2020. A horizontal evaluation determines the extent to which a program or project has achieved expected results.This evaluation examined the Single Window Initiative (SWI) project implementation between fiscal year 2012 to 2013 and fiscal year 2016 to 2017 and was supplemented with an assessment of SWI information up to November 2019. The evaluation was done to assess “whether the SWI achieved a modernized and streamlined approach for the electronic submission and risk assessment of data for regulated commercial goods being imported into Canada.”
Generally, when goods are imported into Canada they are subject to customs duty. However, if it is found that these goods from a specific country and company have caused injury to a Canadian domestic industry, or threatened to cause injury by being dumped or subsidized, then another duty could be assessed on the goods. These are known as anti-dumping and/or countervailing duties.
The Canada US Mexico Agreement (CUSMA) came into effect in July 2020. Shortly thereafter the new dispute resolution of this trade agreement was activated with the US announcing its first CUSMA dispute in December 2020. The dispute was against Canada’s allocation of dairy tariff rate quotas (TRQs) on milk, cream, cheese, industrial cheese, milk powders, condensed milk and butter among other goods. The US disputed Canada’s practise of setting aside certain allocations to dairy processors, and believes the administration of tariff quotas which violates CUSMA. Canada’s system of Supply Management has been a bone of contention between the US and Canada for a number of years now.
Twice a year, Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) releases its Trade Compliance Verification Priorities list. CBSA manages trade compliance with the tariff classification, customs valuation, and origin programs.
With 2021 coming to a close and the New Year fast approaching, we wanted to look forward to what we can expect for 2022 with regards to importing into Canada and shipping goods internationally.
Application of the Harmonized System of tariff classification can be complicated. You can’t just open the Customs Tariff book and Ctrl+F / Command ⌘+F to search (find) for your product. There are legal rules to tariff classification that must be followed. These are called the General Rules for the Interpretation of the Harmonized System (GIR) and must be applied in sequential order. There are also the Customs Tariff Section and Chapter notes, the World Customs Organization (WCO) explanatory notes and various agency rulings, all of which must be taken into account when selecting the correct HS tariff classification code (HS code).
Every 5 years the World Customs Organization (WCO) completes and publishes an updated Harmonized System (HS) Nomenclature. The WCO is an independent intergovernmental body that is responsible for developing international standards to facilitate fair legitimate trade throughout the world. Currently, the WCO has 183 members who represent 98% of world trade. The HS nomenclature is the basis for all member countries’ tariff classification manuals and ensures uniform classification of goods traded internationally.